SA soldier hurt in attack on M23 rebels

2013-08-29 00:00

A SOUTH African soldier was wounded in the leg when the UN intervention force in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) launched an attack on M23 rebel positions in the east of the country yesterday.

Unconfirmed reports said the soldier was in a stable condition.

The attack on the rebel forces was planned and led by the Congolese Army with the UN intervention force in a supporting role, including attack helicopters from the Ukraine. The UN said the supporting soldiers came mainly from South Africa and Tanzania.

The M23 rebels yesterday tweeted that they had emerged the victors from the fight, claiming that several South Africans had died in the attack and that their bodies had been secretly flown from Kinshasa to South Africa.

The UN in the DRC yesterday said only the rebels had suffered casualties in the attack, which took place in the Kibati region, about 15 km north of Goma.

Brigadier-General Xolani Mabanga yesterday said in a statement the tweets by M23 rebels were “mere propaganda and psychological warfare from the rebel forces who want to portray their so-called success against the DRC government troops”.

Yesterday, a crash between a South African Mamba troop carrier and a bakkie also saw a South African soldier twist an ankle.

The only other injury to a South African in the DRC to date was a soldier who had suffered a shrapnel wound to his hand during shelling on Saturday. Two civilians died in the attack, which led to civilians protesting violently at the UN base against lack of protection from the UN.

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